over and above the principles guiding civil society in this country?"
[Wan Saiful Wan Jan is chief executive of the
Institute for Democracy and Economic Affairs (www.ideas.org.my)]
No need to be "both surprised and upset", Wan Saiful - "upset" minds can ruin "perception" in forming "IDEAS", Saiful- and that's bad. So, just "surprised" will do, okay! And since you tend to "upset" allow me to spell it out for you ....
First of all, you need to remember, that in taking up the oath to be a healer, a doctor tends to first swear to "cause no harm" - and only then proceed with the rest.
Likewise- I'd go so far as to say that, MCLM strives to cause no harm to the prospect of removing UMNO from Putrajaya, in its efforts to heal Malaysia of the stench and cancer of corruption. Without the removal of Umno from Putrid-jaya (as it come to be known)- fighting for reform, would be a lost cause.
Then, whatever we do say about UMNO- it should be said within the context of UMNO's legendary intolerance for dissent, and the failure of UMNO to endorse the principles outlined in "The People's Declaration" - these acts speak volumes by themselves ...
So don't come around saying that UMNO hasn't been invited to dinner, Saiful.
It is not that MCLM "fears" a three cornered fight (which you seem to wish for)- but just that it doesn't see the point of it all, unless it is to aid the perpetuation of Umno rule.
It is not that civil society has become subservient to Pakatan Rakyat’s agenda as your "upset" mind perceives- but rather that civil society wishes to use PR in a positive manner, towards removing UMNO/BN and achieving their agenda or principles.
This is not without reason- (Thanks to that octogenarian Umno idol & puppetmaster -Mahathir), it is just that years of attempts upon attempts at reforming Umno/BN has been an exercise in futility - and have only resulted in progressively moronic politicians which has turned the Parliament into an ineffective talk-shop cum circus used to legitimize all thier shenanigans, and worsening corruption .
And, within the component parties, take UMNO for example, there are factions too.
And some of these parties or factions could be open to their reform agenda....
.... MCLM must not discount them."
Oh yes- MCLM definitely realizes that that there are "angels trapped in hell" .... even then, I don't think UMNO is an option, Saiful. If these "angels" who by choice don't mind staying in hell- then that's where they belong. QED.
And since these angels have been powerless to do anything (beyond staying there in feigned disgust) about the rot in UMNO all those years, if wuld be very rational to presume that they're definitely of no consequence to the reform agenda.
"Don't discount them" you say? I seriously doubt MCLM discounts them.... we just hope they have the guts to come out of the closet and be the reformist they claim they are then. Maybe they should realize that it's best they leave UMNO, if reform is what they have in their minds or hearts- otherwise they're best left to their own devices. I'd seriously doubt their credibility or even the point of talking to them unless we need to satisfy some strange masochistic fetish, or love to "fight or play with pigs" .
Nobody is "allowing Pakatan Rakyat’s priorities to be placed over and above the principles", as you put it - the two just converge in their motives towards eliminating a common enemy. It is a synergistic relationship, and not one of subservience as in the case of the Umno Allies in BN. Although it may appear to be otherwise to those who are "upset" and perceive it at "blind partisanship", that perception is far from the truth.
It is only the UMNO/BN spin that has gleefully at first led the people astray and confuse them further into thinking that MCLM intends to go in as a "third force" & turn it into a three-cornered fight .... and now, insinuate that it isn't guided by "principles".
One thing for sure though- it definitely isn't guided by UMNO/BN's hypocritical spirit of "1-Malaysia" reforms.
And so what if it is partisan to those who endorse JUSTICE, Saiful!